Brigham and Women’s Hospital — Harvard Medical School: davidvago.bwh.harvard.edu/
Dr. Vago serves as the research director of the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine and the director of the Contemplative Neuroscience and Integrative Medicine (CNIM) Laboratory at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is an associate professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and the Department of Psychiatry.
Dr. Vago is also a research associate at the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory (FNL), Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), Harvard Medical School. He has completed postdoctoral fellowships in neuroimaging and mind-body medicine, as well as the Stuart T. Hauser Research Training Program in Biological and Social Psychiatry. He has previously held the position of senior research coordinator for the Mind & Life Institute and is currently a Mind and Life Fellow, supporting the Mind and Life mission by advising on strategy and programs.
In 1997, Dr. Vago received his bachelor’s degree in brain and cognitive sciences from the University of Rochester. In 2005, he received his PhD in cognitive and neural sciences with a specialization in learning and memory from the Department of Psychology at the University of Utah. Dr. Vago’s research interests broadly focus on utilizing translational models to identify and characterize neurobiological substrates that mediate psychopathology with an aim to better predict outcomes and potential biologically based diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for those suffering with mental illness and chronic pain.
Through mixed research methods of systems biology, neuroimaging, predictive computational modeling, connectomics, genomic and neuroendocrine science, innovation, and cognitive-behavioral and first-person phenomenological analyses, Dr. Vago focuses on one basic question: What are the basic neurobiological and physiological components that constitute adaptive mind-brain-body interactions and their therapeutic relevance in psychiatric settings? He has a number of ongoing research initiatives, including Mapping the Meditative Mind, in which he has partnered with contemporary meditation and yoga teachers as well as scholars to investigate states of meditation across the spectrum of formal meditative expertise. He has also collaborated with Shinzen Young and used the Unified Mindfulness system with significant success in several of these endeavors.